Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

Tinea fungus on feet.

Tinea fungus on feet.
beginning of content

Tinea

What is tinea?

Tinea is a common skin condition caused by a fungal infection. The fungus thrives best in warm moist environments, so areas like the feet ('athletes foot'), the groin ('jock itch'), the scalp and body (such as under the breasts) and sometimes the toe or finger nails are ideal places for the fungus to grow.

Tinea symptoms

Symptoms can include a red flaky rash that can crack split and peel, blistering and itching.

Sometimes the rash appears in a circular ring pattern which is called ‘ringworm’ and can be a little misleading because there is no worm involved.

If tinea forms in the nails they may develop a yellow or white discolouration. If tinea forms on the scalp, bald spots may occur.

Types of tinea

Tinea infections can affect many areas of the skin and depending on their location and fungal type, the infection has different names:

  • Athlete's foot (tinea pedis): fungal infection of the skin on the feet.
  • Ringworm of the scalp (tinea capitis): fungal infection that develops on the head.
  • Ringworm of the body (tinea corporis): fungal infection of the body that develops on the top layer of the skin.
  • Jock itch (tinea cruris): tends to create a rash in the moist, warm areas of the groin.
  • Pityriasis versicolor (tinea versicolor): fungal infection that develops on the trunk, face or arms.
  • Onychomycosis (tinea unguium): fungal infection of the toe or finger nails.

Tinea treatments

Tinea is treated with antifungal medicines and generally clears up within four weeks.You can purchase these creams from any pharmacy and some supermarkets. Follow the application instructions on the package carefully and speak to your pharmacist if you have questions.

Although rare, tinea can spread to other areas of the body, so good personal hygiene is important to prevent the infection spreading. Go to this page for more information about tinea treatments and prevention.

Most tinea infections are mild and can affect anybody. Young people and men tend to be affected more by tinea on the foot ('athletes foot'). In addition, people who play a lot of sport, spend time in communal changing rooms and showers, or wear trainers (sneakers) are more likely to be affected.

Not sure what to do next?

If you are still concerned about your tinea, why not use healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on when to seek medical attention.

The Symptom Checker guides you to the next appropriate healthcare steps, whether it’s self care, talking to a health professional, going to a hospital or calling triple zero (000).

Sources:

Patient (Dermatophytosis (Tinea Infections))

Last reviewed: July 2015

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Found 70 results

Tinea - Farmer Health | Farmer Health

Tips for Tinea Tinea is a contagious fungal skin infection. Commonly affected areas include the feet (athletes foot), groin (jock itch), scalp and beneath the breasts. Tinea can be spread by skin-to-skin contact or indirectly. It is also known as...

Read more on The National Centre for Farmer Health website

Tinea capitis - ACD

Tinea capitis is a fungal infection of the scalp and hair. It most commonly affects children between three to seven years of age but adults can also be affected.

Read more on Australasian College of Dermatologists website

Parenting and Child Health - Health Topics - Tinea

Tinea is a fungus which causes infections of the skin and scalp. It causes a rash which is usually called 'ringworm' if it is on the head or body, 'athlete's foot' if it is between the toes or 'jock itch' if it is in the groin.

Read more on Women's and Children's Health Network website

Tinea | Better Health Channel

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Fungal problems - myDr.com.au

There are 2 common types of fungal skin infections tinea and candida.

Read more on myDr website

Athlete's foot - myDr.com.au

Athlete's foot is a fungal skin infection that is also known as tinea pedis. It commonly causes skin itch, especially between the toes.

Read more on myDr website

Kids' Health - Topics - Fungal infections - watch out for tinea!

Some germs love to get into areas of your body where it is warm and moist. They move in, get together and start growing and spreading. Fungal diseases are particularly keen on finding such places.

Read more on Women's and Children's Health Network website

Fungal skin infections - myDr.com.au

Areas commonly affected by fungal infections include the skin, scalp, feet, fingernails and toenails, mouth and vagina. Find out what products are available for fungal skin infections.

Read more on myDr website

Foot care - myDr.com.au

Common foot care problems include fungal foot infections, e.g. athlete's foot and fungal nail infections, and warts, corns and calluses. Find out what products are available for foot care.

Read more on myDr website

Chemists' Own Tamsil Cream - myDr.com.au

Chemists' Own Tamsil Cream - Consumer Medicines Information leaflets of prescription and over-the-counter medicines

Read more on myDr – Consumer Medicine Information website

Check your symptoms Find a health service

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice and information you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo
Feedback